Canada to open embassy in Rwanda, where Trudeau starts 10-day trip

Canada To Open Embassy In Rwanda, Where Trudeau Starts 10-Day Trip

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Justin Trudeau’s plane landed at sunset in Kigali, the capital of Rwanda, where he will meet from Thursday with the heads of government of the other 53 Commonwealth countries for the first time since 2018.

The kick-off meeting, scheduled for 2020, was, like so many others, postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which remains an inevitable backdrop to the talks.

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Chancellor Mélanie Joly, who is attending the summit with the prime minister, announced that Canada will establish a permanent embassy in Kigali and appoint an ambassador to this post.

Canada will also appoint a new ambassador to the African Union, based in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia.

Mrs. Joly highlighted that Russian and even Chinese influence was increasingly felt on the African continent.

We cannot be naive, we need to ensure that we have diplomats on the ground with eyes and ears that are listening to what is happening to ensure that we can play a positive role with Rwanda and the entire region.she added.

Food consequences of war

The consequences of Russia’s large-scale invasion of Russia, which began last February 24, have been felt across the world, especially in some of the smaller countries whose leaders will meet in Kigali.

The conflict triggered a massive refugee crisis. It also restricted other countries’ access to wheat from Ukraine, a country often called Europe’s breadbasket because of its massive food production.

African countries, of which 19 are Commonwealth members, have been subject to particularly severe food insecurity. The United Nations World Food Program has warned that millions of people in developing countries and in conflict zones are at risk of starvation.

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Before the war, Russia and Ukraine produced about 30% of the world’s exported cereals. The closure of major Black Sea ports has made it difficult to ship these goods to countries that need them.

Canada will work in several areas to alleviate the food crisis triggered by the war, said government officials, who provided the media with a pre-trip briefing on the condition that they not be identified.

Canada has already provided humanitarian support to Ukraine and elsewhere, officials added, and can rely on the experience of Canadian farmers in storing and transporting crops in difficult situations to help Ukrainians get grain to those in need.

They also pointed out that Canada grows a considerable amount of grain.

Reluctance to condemn Russia

Justin Trudeau spoke about possible measures in a phone call last week with Rwandan President Paul Kagame, who will host the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.

Canada will also promote support for Ukraine among Commonwealth members and will try to convince any leaders who might be reluctant to condemn Russia.

When the United Nations voted to suspend Russia from the Human Rights Council in April, 58 countries abstained from the vote. Of these, 29 were Commonwealth countries.

In Kigali, the Prime Minister of Canada will participate in meetings with Commonwealth leaders and roundtables on climate economics. Prince Charles and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson are also expected to attend the rally. The Queen attended the 2018 Commonwealth Summit, which took place at Buckingham Palace.

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Justin Trudeau is also due to pay his respects on Thursday at the Kigali Genocide Memorial, built in memory of Rwanda’s 1994 genocide against the Tutsi people.

G7 then NATO

Justin Trudeau will then depart for Schloss Elmau, a resort town in Germany’s Bavarian Alps, for the G7 leaders’ summit on Saturday, before heading to a NATO meeting in Madrid next week. He will also meet Pedro Sanchez, the Spanish prime minister.

The Ukrainian Canadian Congress said it expects the prime minister to urge other leaders to act when he is in Germany and Spain.

Congress Speaker Ihor Michalchyshyn said he spoke with Ukrainian defense officials on a recent trip to Kyiv, which highlighted the dire situation they are facing with dwindling military equipment.

They don’t have enough weapons. In fact, they said they would run out of ammo for the next few weeks and months.said Ihor Michalchyshyn. If there is nothing substantial announced and implemented there, it will be empty rhetoric.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is due to address the G7 and NATO summits, where the conversation will focus primarily on economic and military support for the besieged country.

Last week in Brussels, Defense Minister Anita Anand, who will join Justin Trudeau at the NATO summit, announced that Canada would deliver 10 replacement artillery cannons, worth $9 million, in support of the M777 artillery already supplied.

Several world leaders met with Volodymyr Zelensky ahead of the summit series, including Boris Johnson, who made a surprise visit to Kyiv last week.

The British prime minister has promised more British military training for Ukrainian troops, a path Canada can also take, according to Ihor Michalchyshyn.

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Justin Trudeau took his own unannounced trip to Ukraine last month.

As of the end of January, 33,346 candidates to the Security Forces of Ukraine have participated in Canada’s training program, called Operation Unifier, since September 2015.

Operation Unifier has been one of Canada’s most significant defense contributions to Ukraine in recent years.recalled Ihor Michalchyshyn. Canada must, at this time, follow suit and work in the areas where we are strongest.

During his visit to Canada last month, Latvian Prime Minister Krisjanis Karins urged Trudeau to institute a more permanent military presence in the Baltic to counter any Russian perception of NATO’s weakness in the region.

Canada currently has around 700 troops leading a NATO battle group in Latvia, one of many battle groups in the region.

During a joint press conference with Krisjanis Karins in Ottawa, Justin Trudeau announced that a general and six officers from the Canadian Armed Forces would be seconded to NATO Headquarters in Adazi, near Riga, the capital of Latvia, but postponed any major decisions. for NATO. conversations.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has drawn more countries to the next NATO meeting in Madrid, including Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida. He is the first Japanese leader to attend a North Atlantic military alliance summit.

Sweden and Finland, which have applied for NATO membership, are sending delegations. South Korea’s new president Yoon Suk-yeol also signaled his intention to attend.

Justin Trudeau is expected to return to Ottawa on June 30, in time for the Canada Day celebrations.

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